February 8th, 2013

  • trevoke


Do you think you can take over the universe and improve it?
I do not believe it can be done.

The universe is sacred.
You cannot improve it.
If you try to change it, you will ruin it.
If you try to hold it, you will lose it.

So sometimes things are ahead and sometimes they are behind;
Sometimes breathing is hard, sometimes it comes easily;
Sometimes there is strength and sometimes weakness;
Sometimes one is up and sometimes down.

Therefore the sage avoids extremes, excesses, and complacency.
Want to take over the world?
Think again.
The world's a holy place.
You can't just fuck around with it.
Those who try to change it destroy it.
Those who try to possess it lose it.

With Tao, you push forward,
or maybe you stay behind.
Sometimes you push yourself,
other times you rest.
Sometimes you're strong,
sometimes you're weak.
Sometimes you're up,
and sometimes you're down.

A Master lives simply,
avoiding extravagance and excess.

The first version is from the Fortune files. The second version is the Beatrice Tao.

Chapter 29

29.1 Should you want to take the world,
       and contrive to do so,
       I see you won't manage to finish.
29.2 The most sublime instrument in the world cannot be contrived.
       Those who contrive spoil it;
       those who cling lose it.
29.3 So creatures sometimes go and sometimes follow,
       sometimes puff and sometimes blow,
       are sometimes strong and sometimes weak,
       begin sometime and end sometime;
29.4 Therefore sages remove extremes,
       remove extravagance,
       remove arrogance.

Tao Teh Ching - Cleary Translation